Monday, 22 February 2010

Interview with The Drums (Jonathan Pierce)

The Drums are the embodiment of what a difference a year can make. Whilst some bands spend years climbing the proverbial fame ladder rungs, others - either through luck or sheer talent - are propelled to stardom at a rate that their carefully formatted MySpace pages can barely keep up with. Combining 80’s synths, beach pop and sporadic shapes that rival The Rakes’ Alan Donahoe, less than 365 days since they formed, The Drums are already part of one of the most prestigious sell out tours of the year. So Noize caught up with lead singer, Jonathan Pierce, to talk that surfing song, supporting Florence and the Machine next month and being catapulted into the limelight.
Noize: Hi Jonathan, so where in the world are you at the moment?

Jonathan: Ummmm...That’s a good question! [Asks his tour manager Aimee]. We’re in Brighton! It’s all such a blur, I don’t know where we are in Brighton [said in his best British accent] but we’re here and I think it’s my best place of the tour so far

Noize: And you’re a week or so into the NME tour, how is it all going?

Jonathan: It’s going really great, it’s all really fresh and new for us. We’ve never done any sort of touring at all so to be on this tour is pretty incredible for us and really shocking. We never dreamt of such a thing. You know, we started this band a year ago and wrote a batch of songs, thinking we’d maybe play a few shows around Florida and things have really taken off. So, it’s just really incredible

Noize: With this all being so new to you, how were you feeling about touring with some really quite established bands?

Jonathan: Well, we really believe in what we’re doing and what has worked for us in the past is sort of jumping in at the deep end. The first show we ever played was in a cake shop in New York and the whole band had only rehearsed for a couple of hours, the same day as the show. There just happened to be press people at the show who talked well of it and things started moving really quickly. So yeah, we were nervous about it but we thought, let’s just go for it. As long as we believe in what we’re doing, I think that’s what matters.

Noize: So how long after the NME tour do you come back to tour with Florence and The Machine?

Jonathan: We’ll be back in May for the Florence tour. We’re so excited for that. We think she’s really rad.

Noize: And how did the tour with Florence come about?

Jonathan: I guess she is a fan of The Drums. She asked us to tour with her so we said yes, how could we say no! I think it’s going to be really cool. It will nice to come back and see how things have grown and what has changed. It’s something that we never thought would happen so I think it will always be exciting for us.

Noize: So what else have you got planned for the rest of the year?

Jonathan: We have our first single ‘Best Friend’, which will be released in stores pretty soon (05/04/10) and our album’s done and we’ll be releasing that June 7th. As far as the rest of the year, we’ll just be on the road touring. We’ll be over here a lot; I think the UK sort of owns us for 2010!

Noize: What can fans expect from the album?

Jonathan: Well we wrote all the songs on the album pretty much the same time as the Summertime EP. What happened is we wrote about 30 songs in Florida and looked at what we had done and realised we had a whole handful of summery feeling songs. So we decided to put them all on one EP and called it ‘Summertime’ and be really blatant about it.

Then naturally, what’s left is the more darker, more brooding, serious, introspective kind of stuff. It’s more personal, it definitely sounds like The Drums but it’s not all handclaps and whistles, it’s a much more serious.

Noize: Do you think fans of The Drums will be able to get to see a new side to you with the new album?

Jonathan: That’s what we’re hoping. We put out that ‘Let’s go surfing’ song as our first song off the EP and we just thought it would be a fun little thing to put out and it kind of took off and became this big thing that everyone knows. We kind of just don’t want to be considered a surf band, you know.

We have a bunch of songs and there’s only one out of all of them that mention the word surfing, so to be called a surf band is not the worst thing in the world, it’s just not who we are. If anything, we just want to be a rock and roll band that writes pop songs. Perhaps more of a tender side of rock and roll; our own sensitive brand. I think the full-length will sort of put out that sort of surfing flame so that people can sort of see what we really are.

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